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Kenya Airways Jet Crashes in Cameroon

  • VOA News

Cameroon officials are searching for a Kenya Airways jetliner that crashed with 114 people on board in southern Cameroon.

The officials say the Boeing 737-800 jetliner, bound for Nairobi, went down near the town of Niete after taking off from Douala Saturday. There is no word yet on casualties.

Kenya airways chief executive Titus Naikuni tells VOA that authorities in Cameroon have initiated a search and rescue mission. The flight originated in Ivory Coast and had stopped at Cameroon's Douala airport en route to Nairobi.

The airline says the plane was carrying nine crew members and 105 passengers, including several Europeans, Asians and at least one US citizen.

Naikuni says the control tower lost contact with the plane shortly after takeoff. He says Cameroon officials detected an automatic distress signal from the area where they believe the plane went down.

Helicopters have been dispatched to the remote, forest region where the weather is reported to be bad.

Authorities say the plane was only six months old. Naikuni says it took off an hour late from Douala because of the weather.

In January of 2000, a Kenya Airways Airbus jetliner crashed into the sea shortly after takeoff from Abidjan airport in Ivory Coast, killing 169 people.

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